At last it’s done. Decorating the hall and stairs of a three storey townhouse hasn’t been the easiest of projects but now I can reveal all. And the BF has been an absolute star. The top floor has such a high ceiling we had to hire scaffolding to get it painted. And did I choose a nice easy pale colour? Of course not. Then I chose wallpaper for the end walls that had a (how can I put it?) challenging pattern repeat. He never complained once. Well, maybe a bit. And before we scroll down, I’d just like to apologise in advance for the grainy photo’s. The colour scheme is deliberately moody. Great for atmosphere but not so great for nice clear shots. The space really comes into its own at night when the lamps are lit, but you’ll just have to take my word for that.
The Compromises – Every Room Has Them
I’ve probably explained before that the house is only four years old. Brand new when we moved in. As we tick off each room and ban the magnolia, I’ve been gradually going darker and darker. Not a conscious decision. The house just seems to suit bolder colours at the darker end of the spectrum. It’s windows are on the small side, so it’s never going to be a light house anyway. I’m also designing the rooms with certain compromises because this is not our forever house, and I know that at some point we will be selling. So yes, I’m keeping the ceilings, paintwork and radiators white. Don’t want to put off potential buyers in the future do we? Also I am loath to tear up carpet that is still new, so it’s staying for now. But most decorating schemes are designed around compromises after all.
I’ll admit I’ve changed my mind many times with this space. Paint? What colour? Paper? What design? And then I saw this Ava Marika wallpaper from Woodchip and Magnolia. It was love at first sight. And I wanted it to be where it would be noticed the most in a tall skinny space, so it’s on the end walls only. So now, every time I climb the stairs it’s right there in front of me. And every time I turn the corner and walk along the landing, there it is. The teal paint colour is from Valspar and is called Sultry Bay. I already had a sample of this shade squirreled away for future use and it perfectly picked out one of the colours in the paper. It was obviously meant to be.
The console tables I already had. I did a moodboard a while ago to show how you can make sure your old things will work with the new in a decorating scheme. The dark wood works perfectly here. One is just inside the front door in my postage-stamp sized hall and one is on the first floor landing which is a tad more spacious. They are both perfect for plants (real and faux), and a few other bits and bobs. Nothing I’ve used here was bought new. I also already had the large industrial looking star lamp and the bus-sign poster of places I’ve visited.
The large metal window mirror on the landing was gifted by Mirror Deco and I absolutely love it. I was wondering how I was going to fill up that wall space and this is just perfect. The distressed metal frame echos the metal of the star light and picks up the black in other accessories. It also has the added advantage of reflecting back some of the natural light from the landing window and making this area at least, a little bit lighter. A smaller mirror would have been lost in this space but this one is just the correct size and scale.
Also new are the two black and white runners from Cox and Cox (also gifted) that now cover up the carpet along the landing. Just because I’m keeping the carpet for now doesn’t mean I’m that fond of it, and these introduce a nice geometric touch. They also pick up the black from elsewhere and are a welcome contrast to the floral wallpaper.
Another thing that has absolutely delighted me now that this is done, is the view you get through doorways. Never underestimate the borrowed view. I especially like the view from the living room out into the tiny hall. So much so, I have the Moroccan fairy lights on all the time. Did you see my recent post by the way about fairy lights? It’s also becoming a bit of a jungle out there. But no matter how small your space you should always make a good first impression. Don’t you think so?